(LEADVILLE, COLO, Sept. 1, 2022) – The first-ever Colorado Historic Opera Houses Circuit, launched in spring 2022, offers fun events and tours in Colorado’s scenic mountain towns this Labor Day weekend.
The Circuit connects five historic opera houses located in Aspen (Wheeler Opera House), Central City (Central City Opera House), Leadville (Tabor Opera House), Ouray (Wright Opera House), and Telluride (Sheridan Opera House). A new website, ColoradoOperaHouses.com, includes a calendar of events and information about these historic gems.
Labor Day Weekend Events:
- Tabor Opera House, Leadville, Colo. – Cowboy Poetry and Boogie-Shaking Music, on Saturday, Sept. 3, at 7 p.m. Opens with “contemporary cowboy” from Jake Riley, who has performed in 11 states, including three times at the National Cowboy Poetry Gathering in Elko, Nev. The Vail Valley Band has performed country, classic rock, pop, jazz, folk, classical, and even showtunes all over the nation and all over the world. This event is a fundraiser for the Tabor Opera House Preservation Foundation.
- Sheridan Opera House, Telluride, Colo. – Telluride Film Festival takes place Friday, Sept. 2, through Monday, Sept. 5, at the Sheridan Opera House. Called “not just a picture show,” the Telluride Film Festival is tributes to luminaries who’ve propelled the medium forward; it is candid discussions with a film’s creator or the historian who champions it; it is meeting filmmakers; it is engaging in lively debate with every manner of film lover in the summer sun of a Colorado afternoon, always minutes away from a new exhibition.
- Wright Opera House, Ouray, Colo. – The play “Time Flies” takes place Thursday, Sept. 1, through Saturday, Sept. 3, at 7 p.m. nightly. The Open House Theatricals returns to Ouray with this series of short comic vignettes from playwright David Ives. Ives is a contemporary American playwright whose plays are notable for their verbal dexterity, theatrical invention, and quirky humor. In the title work, two houseflies try to make the most out of their brief time on earth.
Labor Day Weekend Guided Tours:
- Central City Opera House, Central City, Colo. – The Gilpin Historical Society offers daily tours of the Central City Opera House, a jewel-box opera house built in 1878 that still displays a frescoed ceiling and names of famous visitors carved on the seat backs. Also on the tour are the Teller House, Thomas House, St. James Church, and the Weekly Register-Call Print Shop, to give visitors a taste of Central City’s unique gold-mining history. Tours leave from the Gilpin Historical Society Tour Office at Washington Hall, 117 Eureka St. in Central City, open daily 10 a.m. to 4 p.m.
- Tabor Opera House, Leadville, Colo. – Tours offer a full walk-through of the Tabor Opera House, built in 100 days in 1879 by mining magnate Horace Tabor. Visitors can roam the elegant performance hall with its original red velvet Andrews opera chairs and stage where John Philip Sousa and Oscar Wilde appeared and magician Harry Houdini vanished. English-language tours on Thursday, Sept. 1 – Sunday, Sept. 4, at 11 a.m., 12:30 p.m., 2 p.m., and 3:30 p.m.; Spanish-language tours on Saturday, Sept. 3, at 11:30 a.m. and 1 p.m.; all at 308 Harrison Ave., Leadville
- Wheeler Opera House, Aspen, Colo. – Visitors can make an even longer weekend and stay for one of the season’s last summer history tours at the Wheeler Opera House. This free guided tour is offered by Aspen Historical Society in partnership with the Wheeler Opera House. It gives an insider’s look at the iconic building as the center of Aspen’s arts and cultural scene since it was built in 1889. Wednesday, Sept. 7 at 1:30 p.m., 320 E. Hyman Ave., Aspen
About the Circuit
The following organizations are Circuit partners:
- Aspen Chamber Resort Association
- Central City Opera House Association
- City of Central City
- City of Ouray
- Gilpin Historical Society
- Lake County Tourism Panel
- Sheridan Arts Foundation
- Tabor Opera House Preservation Foundation
- Wheeler Opera House
- Wright Opera HouseThe project is funded by the Colorado Tourism Office, through its 2022 Marketing Matching Grant, and a collective partner contribution.